Every year since 1970 a tree is selected to be the Capitol Christmas Tree in Washington D.C. This year Colorado was honored and a tree from the White River National was chosen.
The U.S. Forest Service says the tree has passed inspection and will make its way to Washington, D.C., over the next week.
Former U.S. Sen. Ben Nighthorse Campbell and the lodge owner will be driving a truck that will carry the tree in a special cradle.
For some folks, this tree and the ones surrounding it have been a part of their lives ever since they can remember.
Meeker resident Tom Piccirilli said, "Coming up here, hunting in this area since roughly 1979. I've got pictures with my son and daughter playing underneath this Christmas tree."
Now the rest of the world will get a taste of the beauty that Colorado has to offer.
Rep. Scott Tipton (R-03) was at the ceremony and said, "To be able to have our National Christmas Tree selected out of this district, we're very excited about it."
Forest supervisor of the White River National Forest, Scott Fitzwilliams, said, "We're honored, we think we can bring a great message to the capitol and the nation about Colorado, the National Forest and conservation."
"Particularly when you consider a lot of the challenges we had in our state with wildfires this year I think that this will draw attention to the importance of forest health," Tipton went on to say.
Locals and outsiders traveled to the White National Forest to take part in the ceremony.
Mary Cunningham-Gillespie, coordinator for the hand-crafted ornament project, said, "We're a small town, a lot of people haven't even heard of Meeker and I think this definitely not only puts us on the map but it's very exciting because it's an honor for us providing the people's tree."
Some came from as far as the North Pole. Santa, Mrs. Clause and one of their elf's were at the cutting.
Tipton said, "People really come to Colorado for our scenic beauty and to be able to see these glorious trees that we all look at and many times may take for granted. But it's part of what we are as a state."
Onlookers watched patiently. It was a slow but tactful process getting the 73-foot tree out of the ground and onto the truck.
"Again, thanking all the people that made this possible, the community, the sponsors and the staff," said Fitzwilliams.
After crews successfully removed the spruce, those present said it was an honor to wish the tree farewell.
2012 U.S. Capitol Christmas Tree Tour
November 6- Rangely -Steamboat Springs
November 7- Dillon - Glenwood Springs
November 8- Grand Junction - Montrose
November 9- Cortez - Durango
November 10- Pagosa - Alamosa
November 11- Colorado Springs - Denver
November 12- Greeley -La Junta
For more information on the 2012 U.S. Capitol Christmas Tree, click here